Research Project Description
Parkinson’s disease is the most common neurodegenerative movement disorder that results from the death of a specific group of neurons in the brain. Whilst current our understanding of neuronal vulnerability is limited based, our findings strongly suggest that biometals are key players in initiating and propagating the neurodegenerative cascade in that region. A recent promising discovery by our research group demonstrated the abnormal misfolding and aggregation of a copper-dependent protein known as superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1). In disease state, this aberrant protein is abundantly deposited in vulnerable brain regions characterised by neuronal loss, and a copper deficient environment. We have since developed a novel mouse model of Parkinson’s disease that recapitulates these features to investigate tractable treatments that may slow, or halt the disease process.